PIP is “Personal Injury Protections” benefits. PIP benefits are mandatory in every Utah car policy of insurance. PIP benefits are no fault benefits, meaning they are supposed to pay out whenever you are injured by an automobile, regardless of whether you ran the red light, or you were hit from behind. They are first party benefits which are provided by your own car insurance company.
But sometimes, your own insurance company will deny your PIP benefits stating that your injuries are not related to the car accident. When no attorney is present, your own insurance company may summarily deny your PIP benefits. Other times they will conduct an in-house, or contract paper review by a medical doctor. Either way the in-house review is like a soda vending machine. You know what you are going to get when you put the money in—denial.
What can you do in a PIP denial situation?
First hire an attorney to make a determination whether you have a personal injury case. You will be treated differently with a personal injury attorney on board. Second, you can sue them in Utah Small Claims Court. Utah Code Ann. 31A-22-309(5) allows for an order of attorneys fees if you prevail and 1-1/2% interest per month. Or, if you are in an underinsured situation, you can add the PIP denial as an additional claim to your underinsured claim.
Whatever you do, talk to an attorney and get the inside working knowledge of where your rights lay and what you can do about it.
The last three PIP denial cases at Howard Lewis & Petersen, PC, the insurance carrier folded immediately upon presentation of the lawsuit and paid.
Personal Injury Attorney Jacob S. Gunter. (801) 373-6345. Gunterj@provolawyers.com